It almost felt surreal.
I got a call from Grace's school today. I was teaching, and my principal told me that "something" had happened to Grace and I needed to go check it out. I was cool. Calm. This wasn't my first call to the nurse's office. We've had our share of sick kids, fevers, throw up days, and even one huge knot on a forehead from bumping into a pole......but I never expected this kind of news.
"Grace had a seizure today, we think," the nurse stated. Grace was sitting in the secretary's chair, weak looking, but smiling - playing Angry Birds on an iPad.
A what?? A look of incredulousness washed over my face. Seizure? What in the world? My Grace is perfectly healthy...heck, she has been off the percentile chart in growth since birth.
I ran to talk to her PE coach, who was there when it happened, and he gave me the play by play. I gotta say, I was still in an okay frame of mind, until he said, "She twitched for about 5 or 6 seconds....her shoe even came off." That was it. I stormed out of the gym, headed back to the office. I vividly remember having a strong, emotional conversation with Satan that went like this, "Get back! Hands off, Satan! She is NOT yours to play with. Get behind MY Lord!" I'm not quite sure why this was my first response. It could possibly be that I've been preparing myself for the battles he might begin to wage because we've committed to a mission opportunity this summer as a family.
I immediately called my hubs, who met me in the parking lot in less than 3 minutes with a furrowed brow (his worry comes out with vengeance). The drive was long and one pervading thought was of my own mother....and her brain tumor....I tried to push those away. There were several phone calls to friends, doctors, family, and other people who we thought might could offer us any information on what could be wrong. One hour later, we were at the Tyler ER. A battery of tests run - CATscan, blood sample, urine samples, EKG's....all turned out fine.
A wonderful, wonderful doctor at the ER (plus a phone consult from our own family doctor), both were sure this was a common occurence in children. Grace's story of what happened correlated perfectly. It's called the vasovagal part of the brain. In adults, it's one small section that acts as a "shut down/restart" button for the brain whenever there is severe trauma or heightened bodily stressors (anxiety, nervousness, etc). In children, their entire brain is pretty much one big vasovagal. So even small stressors or pain, can cause fainting....and fainting can have twitching, uncontrollable bladders, etc.....during the process.
Grace, as she relayed what happened, was playing with the ball in a stuffy, warm gym. She had only eaten a granola bar that morning and it was about to be lunch, so she was hungry. She tripped and hit her knee on the gym floor, which she said really hurt. When she got up, she felt dizzy. The coach told her to sit down. When she sat, she fainted on the floor and had body twitches. She awoke groggy, but was fine after food and rest.
Needless to say, I was thankful to be living in a country where our medical needs can be attended to with relative ease. I was so thankful to have Grace healthy. In that brief moment, I felt just a miniscule fraction of what parents feel when they watch their babies suffer through terrible diseases....battling day after day....I cannot imagine. Or to be a parent who loses a child without the luxury of one moment more.
My heart is saddened for all those cases. I rest it all in the hands of our Lord, who has already embraced those sweet children in His arms forever.
Friday, January 20, 2012
It almost felt surreal.
Posted by Flo and Grace at 6:21 PM